It may be easier to just wing your way through your college applications and cross the bridge when you get there, but would you want to risk having to attend a school that you don’t want to be in? Understandably, finding, applying to, and choosing a college to go to is a lot of work, but that’s the kind of work that’s worth spending your precious time on.
Don’t be tempted to simply jump on the bandwagon and choose the school that your group of friends is planning to attend. Besides the fact that you could compromise your future by taking the easy way out, it could also be considered a disservice to your growth potential because you chose to limit your options.
So take the time to visit and look at different college campuses. Here are three reasons it’s important:
1. Allows You to Get a Feel of the Place
College is the perfect time to discover who you are outside of your comfort zone. This may even be the very first time you’ll be away from your friends and family you’ve lived with your whole life, which can be a bit frightening. But it’s also an opportunity to be your own person and create a different life for yourself.
That’s why you need to feel the energy of the campus, both when it’s full of life and during its idle hours. Keep in mind that this is going to be your home for the next four years or more of your life, which is why it’s important to get a feel of the place before making your decision. And it all starts with a campus visit.
By visiting the campus, you’ll be able to see the university students in their elements — socializing with their friends and learning more about the world. You can also look at the surrounding communities to see where you can take part-time jobs, look for your new favorite cafe, or find your go-to takeout places.
While learning and growing academically is essential to your undergraduate life, you should also consider your other growth opportunities. Learn about the culture within the campus, ask the enrolled students about what their lives are like, and use all the information you get to help you decide.
2. Gives You a Preview of Your Future
By taking the time to visit different campuses, you’ll be able to see what your college life will be like. It will help you picture yourself in the shoes of the currently enrolled students and imagine how you’ll adapt once it’s your turn to work towards earning your degree. This is why campus visits are a must.
Of course, this will all just be hypothetical until you choose a college to attend, but doing so can give you a preview of how your undergraduate life would look. For instance, you can take a look at the classrooms, libraries, and main cafeteria. You can also spend some time in the quadrangle and just let it all sink in.
Every campus has a distinct personality and set of characteristics that make it special. But you won’t be able to see that unless you physically visit the campuses or join campus tours via video platforms if you can’t go there in person. The point is that you have to at least see the campus before you decide to attend the college or university.
3. Helps You Make the Final Decision
Once you’ve visited all the campuses on your tour list, only then do you decide your future. That’s because you’ve taken the time to weigh all the pros and cons of your options before making your final decision. Although there is no right or wrong way to decide where to earn your degree, it warrants a more meaningful decision-making process than merely making it on a whim.
There are a lot of factors that you need to consider when choosing your course, college, and campus, so it’s not something that you can do overnight. This is especially true because planning the campus visits alone will take a few weeks or months at most since you may need to travel out-of-state for the other options.
The decision you make will affect your life for the next few years of your life, which is why you shouldn’t take this lightly. Of course, nothing is ever set in stone. If you decide to pursue a new path or earn your degree from another school, no one will stop you from doing so. But your first choices will still matter.
Don’t rob yourself of having the best college life you can have just because you couldn’t be bothered to do your research beforehand. You’ve already spent the last decade of your life in a school that wasn’t your choice, so try not to waste this opportunity to finally choose where you want to study.